Carter G. Woodson FBI FOIA request – #1

So I put in a FOIA request to the FBI looking for Carter G. Woodson. Not my first. That was George Basiliko. That led to bupkis. But I decided to give it another try with Carter G. Woodson. I got a response to go bug the National Archives with a couple of file numbers and the document below.

I was going to sit on this but the FBI’s eFOIA system got some crazy bug and sent me about 18 emails in the past 3 days. I have another non-Shaw related request (I’m curious about stuff) and was hoping it was about that. But nope. It took me a while but I discovered it was the same stuff I got before. It’s just one crazy duplicate email after another. And the FBI gives you 48 hours to click on the link if you want your document. I clicked the link and I got an error.

Instead of suffering in silence, I decided to blog about it. May as well write a post.

The above disappointing article is a very brief mention of Dr. Carter G. Woodson. I’m guessing it is FBI file 25-LA-330971 and this appears to be some African American paper where Nation of Islam (NOI) leader Elijah Muhammad had a column. EM mentions Woodson’s book Negro Orators and Their Orations, published in 1925.

When I get something from the National Archives, I might share it. If it is semi-useless as the newspaper clipping from the FBI, I probably won’t.

Memory Lane- BKK Closing-Now imagine it with chairs

I saw in PoP’s post that BKK is closing at the end of March. I decided to look in my old posts and see what I had to mark the occasion. It was about 13-14 years ago when this restaurant opened as the original Beau Thai. Then when they moved to 7th St, it was kept open as BKK.

I liked it better as Beau Thai. It was our go to place to get food when I was too lazy to cook. I loved their Pad Thai and Panang tofu (Thai X-ing had better but the spice levels starting getting off the charts for me). I see Thai X-ing has closed too. Maybe I’ll do another post for Taw Vigsittaboot’s venture.

For a gentrifying area, Beau Thai was what was needed. I remember, what was there before the building was renovated, was a greasy take out with plexi-glass. But I’m starting to doubt my memories, please correct me if I was wrong. This was a sit down place, with wait service, a step up from the options that we previously had. This plus Big Bear a short walk down R St NW just added more amenities to Truxton Circle residents.

The following was originally posted on August 17, 2010:

Well after work, went to Beau Thai at 1700 New Jersey Avenue NW and had me some Pad Thai. I’m full. It was good.
If you have an early menu the phone number is wrong. It seems the phone number is 205-377-5329. I asked about that 205 bit, but apparently it’s 205 and not 202. 202-536-5636
Any way, pad thai.

Beau Thai Co-owner Aschara Vigsittaboot behind the counter, August 2010

The food came fast as she’s got a couple of people in the kitchen, so she differs from her brother Taw (Thai X-ing) in that way. When asked about him, she mentions that he doesn’t have delivery but she hopes to do delivery soon.

Black History Month meet Memory Lane: Carter G. Woodson’s House

Looking at some of the photographs I’ve taken I get to go down memory lane. Since it is Black History Month, let’s look at the father of Black History, Dr. Carter G. Woodson’s house at 1538 9th St NW. But let’s look at it in February 2014. A decade ago.

At the time it didn’t seem the National Park Service was going to do anything with this property or the adjoining properties it owned. I also vaguely remember the NPS was trying to take over a private home on the corner that is now a restaurant.

It had been this way for a while.

1957 Church Survey- Steeple Church Roundup

I was wondering if I got all the churches in the 1957 Northwest Urban Renewal Church Survey. The Northwest Urban Renewal Area was the area that makes up Shaw, Mt. Vernon Sq and Triangle, Chinatown, Downtown and whatever that is near Union Station. So here is a list of the steeple churches captured by the 1957 survey:


First Rising Mt. Zion
Greater New Bethel
Mt. Airy
Mt. Carmel
Mt. Gilead
New Bethany
Redeemer Italian
St. Phillips
St. Stephan’s
Vermont Avenue

Hemingway Temple A. M. E.
Israel C.M. E.
John Wesley A. M. E.
Miles Memorial C.M. E.
Mt. Vernon

Holy Redeemer
Church of the Immaculate Conception
St. Aloysius

Luther Place Memorial
Mt. Olivet

Ascension and Saint Agnes Protestant Episcopal
Bible Way
Chinese Community
Church of God & Saints of Christ
Full Gospel Tabernacle
Holy Trinity
Lincoln Temple Congregational Christian
Mt. Zion Pentecostal
New Tried Stone Church of Christ
Rehoboth Church of God
Third Church of Christ Scientist
Third Church of God
Twelve St. Christian
Verbycke Spiritual

Two Block Fringe Area

Florida Ave
New Hope
Peoples Seventh Day
Walker Memorial

Metropolitan AME
Turner AME

St. Mary Mother of God
St. Paul the Apostle
St. Augustine

Church of the Holy City
Eckington Presbyterian
Fifteenth Presbyterian
Grace Reformed
National City Christian
St. Luke Protestant Episcopal

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

Once again- The historical boundaries of Shaw

This is a repost. But the topic is always something that applies.

Okay so there is a write up in the Washington Post about Shaw. I’m debating about giving Alex Padro a hard time about the east boundary being New Jersey Avenue. Their graphic has Shaw’s western boundary at 13th St NW and the southern part just eats up Mt. Vernon . The boundaries of Shaw keep changing with each article so, there is that. This is a Real Estate article, and they quote Padro and Ibrahim Mumin, so I’m not going to nit pick much, except for this point.

Anyway, here’s a map

map of Shaw and CHand this gem

Commercial Building Map
Map of Shaw for 1970 Commercial Buildings

and this…

Proposed subway line through 1968 Shaw

Fifteenth Street Presbyterian 1899

Fifteenth St Presbyterian, ca 1899? Library of Congress

This is the old building, probably the same one that was in the 1957 Church Survey.

Shaw Neighborhood Convenience Stores, 1970

Everybody in the car,
So come on let’s ride
To the liquor store
around the corner
The boys say they want
some Gin & Juice
But I really don’t wanna
-Lou Bega ‘Mambo No. 5’

If you can’t see the details of the map above go to this link, and click on it to see the details. It shows where the liquor stores, grocery stores, drug stores, barber and beauty shops and other stores in the Shaw neighborhood.

Obligatory February Carter G. Woodson Post- 2023 The History of the Negro Church

It’s February again, which makes it Black History Month where Shaw’s most famous resident, Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the father of Black History, gets some recognition. In previous years I’ve reviewed his most famous book, the Mis-Education of the Negro. Please go on over to my post from 2022.

This would even bore poor Bishop Richard Allen

For something a little different for 2023, we’ll look at another book of his, The History of the Negro Church. I did not like this book because it was gawdawful boring. It was informative, but dull. Despite that, it is this month’s book and we’ll look at every stinking chapter. Maybe you too may learn something about the Black church.

This book is Methodist heavy. There are many denominations in American Christianity and a fair number of majority Black churches in more than a handful of those denominations. Woodson does mention the Catholic and Anglican churches but he doesn’t seem to care for them.

I have seen write ups that claim Dr. Woodson was an atheist. His Wikipedia article says he was an “outspoken detractor of the Christian Church.” I don’t really get that from this book. He seems more like an agnostic. He’s not against the Black church, he’s just not impressed with it. In Mis-Education, he spends far more time bad mouthing ‘educated Negroes’ than he does the Christian church. He’s not a believer but he seems okay with those who are, to a point. In this book, he sees the churches as a means to an ends and an organizing body of the community he cares about. He’s very interested in the denominations’ approach to slavery and how/if they addressed it and pushed back against it. And that’s why it is Methodist heavy.

Lastly, the book was originally published in 1921 and was his 3rd book. The more notable Mis-Education of the Negro, was published in 1933, long after establishing Negro History Week (which became a month, decades after his death), other achievements, and developing the skill to write for a more general audience.